How to Machine G-10

How to Machine G-10

The G-10 material is one that has been present in a number of industries is still picking up more steam as time goes on. Though the process of creating G-10 may seem easy, there is much that goes into it. Many of the properties that give G-10 its unique properties and versatility are exactly what make it more complicated to machine than other materials, like metals. Please be aware, if you were to machine it with the same technique you’d use on metal, it would lead to delamination. G-10 has high machinability, stability, and moisture resistance. It can be machined through CNC, waterjet, or laser cutting techniques. After that, it can be finished down to create precise tools, handles, and other materials through sawing, shearing, and several other techniques. Both diamond-coated and tungsten bits are what work best on G-10. With the proper guidance, the machining process can be streamlined. We hope to give you a better understanding of how G-10 is machined, and the various pieces of equipment and techniques that go into it.

Different Ways to Machine G-10

The best way to get into the machining process of G-10 is by getting to know each piece of equipment, the specific specifications of each, and the many techniques that can be employed depending on your desired end product.

g10 Fabricated Parts

Circular Saw

The first tool we will discuss is the circular saw. Circular saws are saws with blades that are circular and are typically used to cut straight lines into materials such as lumber. They can also be used with G-10/FR4. In this case, the circular saw should have a diamond impregnated wheel. You should also have a good exhaust system and custom dust filters handy to ensure that dust doesn’t accumulate. Also, allowing the saw to idle for too long will cause it to overheat and burn, so avoid that. If overheating does occur, simply pour water over the work and wheel to regulate the temperature.

Band Saw

Next up is the band saw. A band saw contains a blade that is lined with metal teeth which will move in a continuous motion to cut the material being worked through it. For G-10 machining, a carbide tipped blade is recommended, and like always, you need a good system for handling dust. The station should be dry for best results.

Shearing

For our first technique, we have shearing. Shearing is the process of cutting out unwanted material from a larger sample of said material. This can be used for shearing G-10 material up to 3/32.”

Turning, Boring, and Facing

Next up we have the processes of turning, boring, and facing. These processes are all performed for the sake of shaping the G-10 material down to desired dimensions. These processes are performed on automatic screw machines and turret lathes. Usually, you will need to use carbide tipped tools or PCD cutting tools, which are one of the toughest tools for the job, to perform these processes on G-10.

Milling

Then we have milling. Milling is another process that is used for shaping the G-10 down to precise shapes and sizes. This can be done with any conventional metal working milling machine as long as it has carbide tipped tools.

Drilling and Tapping

Now we have the processes of drilling and tapping. Drilling and tapping are techniques that go hand in hand as they create screw threads in the material. To perform this process on G-10, one needs a carbide drill. Steel tools can be used only for short runs. G-10 will tap the same way that paper-based products do.

Threading

Next up is threading. Threading is the process that we touched on above as drilling and tapping directly lead to threading. The goal of threading is to create a screw thread that a screw will ultimately be used in. As with all the other tools, one would need them to be carbide tipped for the best results. Dry and fine cutting should also be used to get it to come out well.

Buffing

Finally, we have buffing. The grinding and sanding portions of buffing can be done on a belt, disc or with a handheld method. The process of buffing is used to shine the material one has finished working on. For G-10 buffing should be done on a rag wheel. No lubrication is needed when it comes to buffing this material, however, a buffing compound is recommended to improve the effectiveness of the wheel.

Group of g10 (different colors)

Personal Protection Equipment While Machining G-10

When involved in any manufacturing or machining process, one should always be looking to be as safe as possible, and machining G-10 is no exception. Because of this, you should be aware of the safety equipment you need to use to keep yourself injury-free. First and foremost, you should be wearing goggles. When performing any of the functions above, you can end up with small pieces of G-10 breaking off and flying in your direction. Goggles will prevent any of those pieces from damaging your eyes. Next up is a proper set of work gloves. Gloves will keep your hands safe in every situation. We touched on overheating when we discussed the circular saw, but it can occur on many machines in the manufacturing process. An overheated machine can easily burn someone who is not being careful; keep coolant on hand in case a situation arises. We also touched on the need for a good exhaust system. An exhaust system’s main function is to keep the air clear of any potentially dangerous particles or fumes. In the case of working with G-10/FR4, an exhaust system and/or respirator is crucial for safety. The dust that emits from working with G-10 can be hazardous. Make sure you keep the dust clear from the air and ensure that you avoid breathing it in. With these safety protocols in mind, you should also implement any additional safety measures that will keep you and anyone else working with you safe.

Current Can Help with Machining G-10 Today!

The process of machining G-10 is a little more unique when compared to other materials, but it is still machining, nonetheless. With a little extra care, and some specialty equipment, the process of machining G-10 will become easier and easier the more you do it. G-10 can be used for a wide variety of purposes, learning to machine it can be extremely beneficial for many industries that have room to implement it. Only practice will make the process easier, so just try to keep the above information in mind, and machining G-10 will feel like you’re machining any other material that you may work with.

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